Well, we’re booked for Jogjakarta (or Yogjakarta) for Dec. 27-Jan. 2. I’m calling this my Christmas present to myself (and to Via), since there won’t be much of a Christmas here. Haven’t had a “real” Christmas in a few years.
After much research, we’ve settled on the Adya Nalendra Boutique Hotel, in the center of town but in a neighborhood not far from the hustle and bustle. (http://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g294230-d1423485-Reviews-adya_Nalendra_Boutique_Hotel-Yogyakarta_Yogyakarta_Region_Java.html).
The “hotel” has 15 rooms and a restaurant. Go here to see photos. (http://www.agoda.com/id-id/adya-nalendra-boutique-hotel/hotel/yogyakarta-id.html?type=2&CID=1572555&URL=http%3a%2f%2fwww.agoda.web.id%2fasia%2findonesia%2fyogyakarta%2fadya_nalendra_boutique_hotel.html&cklg=1&setcookienew=1).
Booking flights was very difficult, as my new credit cards would not work on Lion Air. Finally was able to complete the transaction on another site after trying for two days. The price of tickets kept going up seemingly by the hour as I struggled with repeatedly filling out the forms, only to run into roadblocks. Ended up paying about $50 more than when I started the process. Price for two round-trip tickets was about $500. That’s with a low-cost airline, but I discovered last year that air fares during the Christmas holiday period are actually higher here than during Ramadan, which is strange. The planes will most assuredly be jammed, and Lion Air is not noted for spacious economy class – I can barely squeeze into their seats; Via will have no problem. The flights are non-stop and last two hours.
Jogjakarta is located on the island of Java, southeast of Jakarta, the capital.
The next step is to book some tours. Jogjakarta has lots of ancient Buddhist and Hindu temples, as well as an active volcano just outside of town. This is also a great place for shopping for native wares – and there are beaches within a 45-minute ride.
All the tour operators I found listed, however, described their tours as first being picked up at the airport and going immediately to the first place on the tour. And then there’s 3-4 consecutive days of touring. We want to go to our hotel when we arrive and take tours one day at a time. We have five days and figure two days of sightseeing, one day at the beach and the other two days on our own. So I sent e-mails to five of the operators asking if they could pick us up at our hotel and provide special tours for us. No problem. Here is what one operator offered (US$1 = IDR 11,500):
After breakfast we pick up you at HotelDrive to DiengVisit sikidang craterVisit Mirror lakeVisit pandawa templeDrive to Borobudur area, explore the templeBack to jogjakarta and return to hotel
Visit Merapi for lava tourVisit Sultan palaceVisit Tamansari water castleVisit Kotagede (batik and silver processing)Visit Prambanan templeBack to hotel
Drive to wonosariVisit pindul cave tubingVisit sri gethuk water fallVisit Ngobaran beachDrive back to JogjakartaReturn to hotelEnds service
- Private air condition car
- Parking fee
- Entrance fee
Dieng all around : 50.000Borobudur temple : 190.000Prambanan temple : 170.000Sultan palace : 12.5000Tamansari : 10.000Merapi : 10.000Pindul cave tubing : 70.000Srigethuk waterfall : 25.000Ngobaran beach : 8.000